Best Ohio LGBT Lawyer Reply: What rights do LGBT employees have? Does sexual orientation matter at work? Is sexual orientation a protected class? Can I be fired because I’m gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgendered?
Our employment discrimination attorneys have previously blogged about LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) issues. You probably recall that LGBT employment discrimination is an evolving area of the law. Many state and local governments have already enacted laws prohibiting employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. There are far fewer state and local laws offering protections based on gender identity. Notably, Ohio is one of the states with no LGBT employment discrimination laws on its books. This is a horrific injustice. Our employment discrimination attorneys have blogged about this problem before (Can My Job Discriminate Against Me Because Of My Sexual Orientation?; Top Attorney Answer To: Do I Have A Wrongful Termination Claim If I Am Treated Differently For Not Conforming To Gender Stereotypes?; Sexual Orientation Employment Discrimination: ENDA In Sight?)
The LGBT community had a recent win with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC“) in Baldwin v. Dep’t of Transportation. The commission held that discrimination against an individual because of that person’s sexual orientation is discrimination because of sex and therefore prohibited under Title VII.
In Baldwin. the employee alleged that his employer, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) denied him a permanent position because of his sexual orientation. The commission explained:
When an employee raises a claim of sexual orientation discrimination as sex discrimination under Title VII, the question is not whether sexual orientation is explicitly listed in Title VII as a prohibited basis for employment actions. It is not. Rather, the question for purposes of Title VII coverage of a sexual orientation claim is the same as any other Title VII case involving allegations of sex discrimination — whether the agency has “relied on sex based considerations” or “take[n] gender into account” when taking the challenged employment action.
The commission concluded that the employee’s claim of sexual orientation discrimination alleged that the FAA relied on sex-based considerations and took sex into account regarding the permanent position. Thus, the commission reasoned, the employee’s sexual orientation is necessarily an allegation of sex discrimination under Title VII.
Not only did the commission determine that this employee’s allegation of sexual orientation discrimination was a claim of discrimination on the basis of sex under Title VII, the ruling also applies to all federal agencies. Thus, if you are a federal employee you can bring a Title VII claim if you have been discriminated against because of your sexual orientation.
What is next for the LGBT community? We hope that federal courts will soon apply the same rationale to all cases of sexual orientation discrimination. If you believe that you have been discriminated against or wrongfully terminated because of your sexual orientation, you still may be able to bring a claim against your employer. This area of the law is currently changing and giving LGBT employees more protection.
If you are searching “I need a lawyer because I have was wrongfully fired or terminated today;” or “I have been discriminated against because I am …” gay, a lesbian, bisexual, or transgendered; or even think that you might need an employment law lawyer, then it would be best to call the right attorney to schedule a free and confidential consultation at 866-797-6040. Your employment rights are constantly changing and the best way to find out if you can sue your boss, manager, supervisor or employer for discrimination, harassment, or wrongful termination is to call Spitz, The Employee’s Law Firm and talk to its attorneys, who are experienced and dedicated to protecting the rights of employees just like you.
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